X-Blades Review
Xbox 360 | PS3 | PC
X-Blades box art
System: X360, PS3, PC Review Rating Legend
Dev: TopWare Interactive / Gaijin Entertainment 1.0 - 1.9 = Avoid 4.0 - 4.4 = Great
Pub: SouthPeak Interactive 2.0 - 2.4 = Poor 4.5 - 4.9 = Must Buy
Release: Feb. 10, 2009 2.5 - 2.9 = Average 5.0 = The Best
Players: 1 3.0 - 3.4 = Fair
ESRB Rating: Mature 3.5 - 3.9 = Good

Combat in and of itself can be quite entertaining at times. There are plenty of skulls to cave in, and the action (and blood spray) flows fast and free. However, the longer you play, the more repetitive the gameplay starts to feel. The fact one area starts to look like the next over time isn't just a feature of the game's visual design; you'll actually be backtracking through some of the same rooms you've already spent ample time carving your way through. This - and recycling a few of the same boss battles early on - just seems a tad lazy.

X-Blades screenshot

Another curiosity: getting killed will start you back at the beginning of the current area, but you'll keep everything (including souls) you've accumulated throughout your quest. This balances some of the overwhelming feelings that arise in levels where you've being cut down from all directions by dozens of evil creatures, yet it's hard to say whether the no-consequences approach is really a good thing. You can die a zillion times, and it has little bearing on the game itself.

Some players will certainly appreciate the attention put into getting Ayumi's physical design just right, but the overall visual style of the game is quite captivating. Brilliant lighting effects and an impressive level of detail in the ruins and enemies offer other forms of eye candy beyond the obvious. The cel-shaded anime cutscenes that further the plot in-between some levels are also nicely-done.

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X-Blades is a beautiful, action-packed title with some serious flaws. It isn't really the kind of game you'll want to sit down and play for many hours on end, yet some of the repetitiveness can be remedied by putting the controller down for a while and returning when you've got the urge for some senseless violence and skimpy outfits. Despite finding quite a few things that proved substantially irritating at different moments, the battle-heavy action does indeed scratch an itch.

By Nathan Meunier
CCC Staff Contributor

RATING OUT OF 5
RATING DESCRIPTION
4.0
Graphics
Whether your interest lies in the female form or in beautiful environments to hack and slash through, there's plenty of pleasing views to soak in.
3.8
Control
Quick and fluid maneuvers are enhanced by myriad camera angles and smooth controls.
2.4
Music / Sound FX / Voice Acting
The voice work is painful...the dialogue is worse.
3.0
Play Value
Fun in short bursts, the gameplay gets repetitive quickly.
3.6
Overall Rating - Good
Not an average. See Rating legend above for a final score breakdown.

Game Features:

  • Absorbing fantasy story with spectacular landscapes and figures.
  • Learn to play easily - wide range of development possibilities.
  • Innovative Blade Gun for firing projectiles and for close combat.
  • Role-playing elements to improve skills and enhance weapons.
  • Over 20 types of magic in different classes and around 40 different levels.


  • Screenshots / Images
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